Lil Peep and XXXTentacion’s “Falling Down” — which came out on Wednesday — is a controversial, convoluted and potentially cathartic release, depending on your vantage point. The song is the first collaboration between two rappers both passed away young, and never worked together while they were alive. The John Cunningham-produced track features the two musicians singing about watching “the rain as it’s falling down” over a guitar-led beat.
In August, Portland-based rapper and singer iLoveMakonnen announced that a song from the two deceased artists was imminent. Last year, Makonnen and Lil Peep were working on an album together in London, which was never completed. One of the unfinished songs that came from those sessions was “Sunlight on Your Skin.” In an XXL interview, Makonnen described how “Sunlight on Your Skin” turned into the XXX-featuring “Falling Down.”
“It came together from me and Lil Peep’s session in London when we were working on our album there…X had heard the snippet on YouTube and he wanted to be a part of it and he recorded some parts to it,” iLoveMakonnen shares. “[X] ended up passing away, and his mom and his family were reaching out to Peep’s management and everybody saying the song was something that [X] was very passionate about before he passed and he would really like to be a part of this and [asked] if we could make this happen. So I was like, ‘Sure.’ That’s what me and Peep were making music for, to bring people together.”
Later in the interview, the “Tuesday” singer described how he thinks XXX and Peep’s mother’s got involved with the release.
“I definitely think it was like the mothers’ wish,” he continued. “[X] had just been tragically taken away and Peep passed away as well. I think it’s something both the mothers have in common. Both losing children who were both influential in music. One wanted to big up the other one before he passed. The mothers have the final say because these are their children at the end of the day. I think they’re doing it bigger for more of the fans as well than just for themselves. I think it’s gonna bring some closure to everybody with some healing.”
During the interlude of the song, Onfroy could be heard talking about Peep.
“Like, if I would have known he was so cool and it’s like, yo, if I would have watched interviews sooner, bro, we were so alike,” the “SAD!” rapper says. “It’s unfortunate because it’s like, yo, when people die, that’s when you’re there, you know? ‘Cause your remorse kinda makes you check ’em out.”
Lil Peep’s collaborators shared their viewpoints in the wake of the song’s release, via Genius. GothBoiClique producer Fish Narc shared his thoughts on Instagram Stories:
“Peep never heard the Triple X feature, cause it didn’t get made until after he was gone,” Fish explained. “He explicitly rejected Triple X for his abuse of women. He spent time and money getting Triple X’s songs removed from his Spotify playlist and wouldn’t have co-signed that song.”
In a since-deleted tweet, Peep collaborator Lil Tracy stated, “they was never even friends didn’t even like each other.”